The capture of Jubreal Chahine was a major coup for the Nevada Gaming Control Board. He was one of the seven most-wanted casino cheats for officials in the state, as there were seven warrants out against him at the time of his capture. But that’s just the start for state regulators, and they’d like to see the other six most-wanted gambling criminals on their list to meet the same end as Chahine.
Chahine was a man who had used a high volume of low-value scams to bilk casinos for cash. He had pulled basic schemes like placing late bets (known as “past posting”) at roulette tables or swapping in larger denomination chips when he knew he’d win at the blackjack table at casinos across the United States enough times to rack up 21 felony charges.
“Guys like Chahine are what I call low-level, repeat offenders,” said the Nevada Gaming Control Board’s Chief of Enforcement Karl Bennison. “Who knows how many times he was successful, but if you can get away with it, cheating can be profitable.”
Most-Wanted List Determined by Extradition
Chahine was one of seven individuals that had been placed on the Control Board’s exclusive list of the most notorious casino criminals. In order to choose who ends up on the list, several factors are considered, though how far authorities would be willing to go to capture those considered is often what decides who makes the cut.
“Usually, the extradition boundaries correspond to the crime,” Bennison said. “For someone to even be considered for the list, the DA’s office is making that determination. We simply do not want to put someone on that list that the DA would not extradite.”
The remaining six alleged criminals are accused a wide variety of casino-related crimes. Here’s a look at each of their transgressions, in alphabetical order:
Rogel Canlas: Canlas is accused of using his access as a slot technician at Wynn Las Vegas in order to steal points from the loyalty cards of numerous players. Ultimately, he managed to download the points to a slot machine, giving him about $10,000 to play with, an amount he and his brothers gambled up to around $19,000.
Patrick Curtin: A night shift worker at a Reno sports book, Curtin was responsible for counting the night’s take and then returning it to the cashier. But one night, Curtin took the $57,000 he counted and disappeared, earning himself a felony theft charge in the process.
Francisco Garcia: While working at Jerry’s Nugget, Garcia was caught hiding $13,340 in cash in a trash can. That money was nearly identical to the amount on 15 falsified jackpot tickets that Garcia had introduced during his shift on the slot floor. Garcia would later admit to taking $25,000 in another incident. He faces 11 counts of felony theft.
Luis Daniel Frias: Frias was one of three suspects in a roulette chip conversion scam at The Venetian. He and the other two individuals would buy into roulette games and receive colored chips that they used to place $1 bets. They would then take some of those non-value roulette chips off the table and pass them to one of their associates, who would buy-in at the table for a higher denomination. They’d reintroduce those chips, now being played for $25 each, and then cash out at the higher value.
Larry Dean Roush: Roush is accused on several occasions of exchanging smaller bills for a $100 bill, after which he would try (sometimes successfully) to convince cashiers that they had given him a $10 or $20 instead. He pulled this small-scale scam multiple times, and is the subject of ten Control Board cases in Reno as a result.
Jhon Manuel Soriano-Alequin: Involved in similar roulette conversion scams as Frias, Soriano-Alequin was part of a group that netted about $2,200 after such a scheme. He’s also the subject of two other Control Board investigations.